In Memory of Bob Kimmons

 

A letter from BCC’s CEO:

Talented mentors walk a fine line.  They must carefully balance constructive feedback and ask objective questions, while allowing those to whom they are providing counsel to decide what path to choose.

On December 14, 2020, Board of Child Care (BCC) lost a longtime board member, fierce advocate, and loyal friend.  Bob Kimmons was a man who inspired every single member of BCC’s leadership team to be our best selves.  In the days since his passing, each of us has reflected on what Bob has meant in our lives. Unilaterally, we all said “mentor” without hesitation.

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Introducing: The BCC Compass

 

Welcome to The BCC Compass

A compass is a powerful tool. For centuries, it has helped people find their way through life’s adventures and journeys. It is a symbol of guidance and direction, even during uncertain times. It’s also a fitting name for our new blog, which we created to share our pursuit of an equitable, diverse, and inclusive environment at BCC. An environment that we all – regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual identity, religious beliefs, disability, or age – can engage in with joy and purpose in our special work.

Through The BCC Compass, you will learn about some of our critical conversations and initiatives to support that environment, including our internal LGBTQ+ committee’s revolutionary work, our racism town halls, and our unconscious bias training.

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BCC rocks the polls

Despite the unprecedented times that we currently live in due to COVID-19, four years swiftly passed since our last election! Americans across the U.S. are making sure they exercise their suffrage rights, and so are our youth here at BCC!

The “Rock the Polls” initiative educated our eligible youth on their state and national candidates and provided bipartisan answers to questions youth arose.

In total, 22 eligible youth residing across Baltimore’s Main Campus, Colesville, Hagerstown, Nicodemus, Denton, West Virginia, and TFC are now registered to vote and ready to rock the polls! This is a milestone for our youth as it is their first time utilizing their voice to positively impact our community! It is the beginning of our youth’s journey into social action; however, it doesn’t stop here! We want to encourage our youth to take an active voice in social issues and future state and national elections to come.

We are the role models for the kids that we serve. Make sure YOU get out there and rock the polls!

 

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Conquering Dragons

“Conquering Dragons”

A Centering Moment by Pat Andrews, Director of Behavioral Health (WV and PA)

I ran across a GK Chesterton quote recently that went something like this:

“We tell children fairy tales not so that they will believe in dragons but so that they will believe that dragons can be conquered.”

It’s no secret that 2020 has had more than its fair share of challenges. But so have the young people we serve.  Sadly, most children in BCC’s care have felt the fire of dragons named poverty, illness, addiction, domestic violence, loss, racism, bullies, and abuse.

And yet, teaching our heroes and heroines how to fight them is BCC’s purpose.

It made my week yesterday when I witnessed a formerly sullen and angry young lady utilize a technique called the Anger Control Chain.  This was a brand-new skill she was taught over the past few weeks in group therapy and is part of BCC’s evidence-based practice rollout called Aggression Replacement Training.

That moment represents for me what my career as a therapist and BCC’s work is all about.

As we face challenge after challenge and see the dragons of mental illness, loneliness, illiteracy, hopelessness, and anger fall we rejoice and savor the moment of victory before preparing for the next battle.

It sounds exhausting; and it is…but like in any good band of comrades we take care of ourselves and each other and as the apostle Paul challenged us through his letters to the disciples in ancient Galatia; “Do not become weary in well doing. For when the time is right you will be rewarded if you don’t give up.”

So, be encouraged, don’t give up… and let’s get to work conquering dragons.

 

Centering Moments are part of BCC’s culture.  They are typically shared at the beginning of our larger meetings, such as with our senior leadership team or at the quarterly all staff meetings. Many thanks to Pat Andrews for this beautiful one and for her permission to repost it on BCC’s website.

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BCC Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month 2020

September is Hispanic Heritage Month and BCC is celebrating it with members of our Hispanic community!

On Wednesday, September 16th, the  Caminos program kicked off BCC’s “Celebración del Mes de la Herencia Hispana” with Hispanic Heritage display tables and a carryout cuisine sampling.

Through the sights, sounds, and flavors of Latin America, the Caminos program gave the youth and staff of the Baltimore Campus a glimpse of the diverse traditions of Latinx culture.

Hispanic Heritage Month has been officially recognized in the United States since 1968. The celebration lasts from September 15th until October 15th.  September 15th is significant because it is the anniversary of independence for various Latin American countries including Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. In addition, Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence days on September 16 and September18, respectively.

Thank you to our Caminos program team and everyone who came out to celebrate!

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Jim Young Memorial Golf Tournament Online Auction

Jim Young Memorial Golf Tournament Banner

The Jim Young Memorial Golf Tournament silent auction is moving online for 2020!

The 2020 Jim Young Memorial Golf Tournament Silent Auction is open!

We have taken our annual tradition of a silent auction online this year! This means that even if you are not able to take part in the golf tournament, you still have the opportunity to bid on some fantastic items from local businesses, experiences to treat yourself or a special someone, and even handcrafted ceramics and pottery made by Board of Child Care Art Students.

You can view the auction items at www.accelevents.com/e/JIMYOUNG

Once the auction opens on September 9, 2020, and closes September 18th.  You will be asked to create a log in for the site, and will be directed how to view and bid on items. You can also text to bid following the site instructions.

There is both the option to bid on the website or you can also “Text to Bid” by using the number listed on the website in the Text to Bid window and the corresponding 3 Letter code on each item and the amount of your bid.

Proceeds from the sale of auction items will be going directly to support the youth and programs of the Board of Child Care. Certain items from special donors will benefit specific groups or programs and will be noted in the item description.

Please take a few moments to see what we have to offer, get a head start on making your Christmas Shopping list, or just treat yourself! If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact Aaron Andrews at aandrews@boardofchildcare.org

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Request for Proposal – Asana Consultant

Overview and Background

Board of Child Care’s (BCC) Chief Operating Officer is seeking an Asana consultant for an August/September engagement with 1:1 monthly coaching thereafter (at least through the rest of 2020).  The COO hopes to decide on consultant by Monday, August 24 with work to begin thereafter. Applications will be reviewed on a first come first serve basis.

BCC is a medium-size not-for-profit organization (850 employees, $45 million annual budget) serving children and families across the Mid-Atlantic region of the USA. www.boardofchildcare.org/programs

Some terms and definitions:

  • Executive Leadership Team (ELT): Six people comprised of the CEO, CFO, COO, Chief Human Resource Officer (CHRO) and two Executive Directors (both handle responsibility for program oversight in MD/DC and WV/PA respectfully)
  • Senior Leadership Team (SLT): Members of ELT plus all the organization’s Vice Presidents (3) and Directors/Managers (18) across both programing and support department functional areas.

The COO was an early adopter of Asana and brought it to BCC six years ago (user of one – him) having used it at his prior job (again user of one).  Today, the teams that the COO directly oversees use Asana in their day to day function and coordination (IT / marketing / Quality Assurance / Fundraising / Administrative Support). These teams have an expectation of clearing their Asana inbox at least once a day and discussions on Asana norms and workflows within those teams occur on a regular basis.  These are the easiest teams to do this with as the COO oversees them.  As in most stories of software adoption, however, it gets more difficult as you expand across the org chart, and this is really where the consultant comes in.

The Executive team (and a handful of SLT members) have been using Asana well to coordinate new program launches, respond to particularly complicated RFP type proposals, pre-work and actual coordination of a merger with another non-profit in 2019, plan events, and several other types of work. They have coded in the strategic plan to the software last year and this year but has had fits and starts of getting people to keep their items up to date. There are corporate KPI’s that the ELT tracks in Asana (although the COO suspects the consultant will have a better way to do this).  A limitation the ELT feels is that the work effort of putting the KPI’s in Asana doesn’t translate to everyone knowing the KPI’s or where they stand (nor do people feel a connection to how their work impacts those KPI’s).

Like most pieces of software, Asana usage even across ELT and some members of SLT varies and is inconsistent.  There isn’t consistent or in some cases any usage of the Asana inbox, and there are still big gaps in time where some Asana members don’t update their tasks or projects so you lose that sense of momentum and “what’s going on?”  There is a common declaration by some that the Asana inbox is always impossible to get to given the high volume of email they receive for normal business and programing operations.

The COO and the CEO both feel that culturally everyone on ELT agrees in concept that there are good bones to Asana usage at BCC (in some functional areas more than others) and that as a leadership team ELT does see the potential for the software to really manage the strategic plan and all the elements that need to hum along to achieve the outcomes they desire.

Deliverable

What the COO is looking for in a consultant is someone who can help bring Asana to that next level at BCC.  That next level means:

  • Reviewing how the COO onboards people to the software and transitioning the burden of this from him to others.
  • Reviewing the actual project and team structure in Asana and documenting it such that new users can get oriented to the “how BCC uses Asana” question.
  • All members of SLT are in the platform and that they are (at least monthly) updating their strategic projects and quarterly rocks (milestones). The COO and CEO feel we will be successful this year if the burden of updating 90% of the projects and milestones has moved from ELT to their direct reports, so ELT can spend more time on bandwidth, coaching, adjusting milestone delivery dates as new information is uncovered, and getting people unstuck.
  • It is easy to send our Board of Directors an update on how we’re doing without a lot of manual exports using Asana2go or the Google Drive integration currently employed.
  • Every member of SLT knows what THEY are responsible for (strategically) each quarter, and they know what each other are working on and how it’s going. The vision is, for example, that the director of the school BCC runs should know at a high level how the development team is doing fundraising wise, and the development vice president should know how the school is doing rolling out it’s new behavior management program.

Our vision is not that every member of SLT needs to be able to build complex implementation projects in the software. The natural list makers and early adopters will self-select into this skill.  But at the core once the ELT has set the goals, projects, milestones and thought about where they should be due, and the KPI’s, they want to see SLT execute on those.  Our vision is not that every member of SLT forgoe the use of email and only use the Asana inbox.  Generally the consensus (at least right now) on ELT is that they would be happy if SLT folks could at least be assigned tasks in the software, know that those tasks were seen, and that SLT will actually both complete the task AND mark it as done in the software (several current users are not good about actually marking things as done, which makes it difficult to actually know where a project stands). This whole dynamic is another area the COO feels a consultant can really give BCC lift.

At the moment, all members of ELT have a license and some members of senior leadership team does.  Some with licenses are not really “in” Asana each day. Some love the tool and use it every day, and some have no experience and no access to it yet.

In order to get the strategic plan to really live and breathe, the COO is seeking a consultant to help scale the Asana experience to this newbie group (about 40 people at various org chart levels – everyone on SLT and then a handful of other supporting roles and support departments that we really need to bring in to make this all work).

Finally, Microsoft Teams is included in BCC’s MS 365 subscription and the COO is seeing informal adoption of this tool across various groups.  While he has no interest in coding in the strategic plan to MS Teams (Asana it is not), he does want to avoid the confusion of “well I put that in teams but I was supposed to put that in Asana” or just that feeling of having too many inputs (email, Asana, MS team updates, etc.).  I need help from the consultant to lay out the framework for appropriate usage of MS teams and some clear training on what appropriate uses are for it (as it not feasible budget wise to bring everyone at BCC into Asana).

Requirements of the consultant:

  • Certified Asana Pro – while COO may consider someone who does not have this certification, preference is given to individuals who can bring scope and experience of how other companies have achieved what BCC is looking to do in Asana and the best way to do it.
  • Able to do video calls during normal business hours on Eastern Standard Time.
  • Can begin the engagement the week of August 24th
  • Clear communicator in English (written and oral). Must be able to create clear training materials.
  • Brings with them tools and templates that can be rapidly modified and deployed to BCC as appropriate.
  • Experience working with companies at least the size of BCC. Consultants who have not engaged clients as large or as complex as BCC (e.g. has many different service or product lines, large geographic area, Asana user base of at least 70) will unfortunately not be selected.  COO is not willing to be the first engagement of this size for a consultant.
  • Experience working with executive teams.
  • Can complete a reference check

How to Apply

Fill out the Asana form (obviously)

Deadline for applications:  Thursday, August 20

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Everyday Heroes – The Baird Family

BCC is proud to announce that the WMAR-2 News and Chick-fil-a Everyday Heroes award was presented to the Baird Family in the month of July.  The award is given to local families who go above and beyond to make a positive change in their community, using their time and talent. The Baird family is also part of BCC’s family through Bobby Baird, who is the agency’s, Chief Financial Officer.

The Bairds saw a need in their community and wanted to help when the COVID 19 pandemic struck back in March of 2020. Since that time, they have donated over 16,000 sandwiches to the Our Daily Bread Meal program in Baltimore.  Today, food donations continue to climb, and their impact continues to grow. In addition to the sandwiches the family makes to donate, they have collaborated with friends and neighbors to contribute things like homemade casseroles, hygiene supplies, and other necessities.

“It started with friends and family and neighbors and people who heard about it and wanted to help out. They randomly show up, and we can spot them now; they come into the neighborhood looking for the street number and asking, “Is this the Peanut Butter and Jelly House?” says Bobby Baird.

In addition to serving the Baltimore community with wife Lizzy and their five children, Bobby oversees all financial operations for the Board of Child Care, in addition to the Dietary and Maintenance services teams. We are proud to have the Bairds as co-workers and neighbors. They indeed are examples of everyday heroes!

Click HERE to see the video

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